Stefania Tansini Turin, Italy

Artistic residency and Workshop: The umbilicus of limbo

Turin, Italy
December 13—24, 2022
December 13—24, 2022

In December choreographer and dancer Stefania Tansini — awarded in 2022 with the renowned Ubu prize as best Italian performer under 35 — is invited to develop an artistic residency at Dom Utopii / International Empathy Center in Krakow, as guest of Santarcangelo Festival within the programme of Boarding Pass Plus Dance. Dedicated to the development of the choreography for The umbilicus of limbo, the research period includes the proposal of a public workshop held by the artist and realised with the support of the Italian Cultural Institute of Krakow (December 19, 10am to 4pm).

The umbilicus of limbo is a journey that originates from a reflection on madness, here understood as an ambiguous and non-unique relationship between things. An action for non-theatre spaces, in which the body immerses itself in an existing real environment, lives it and contaminates it. A process of action that follows a perceptive flow of events, which refuses to be recognised in a conventionality of composition.

The only remedy for madness is the innocence of facts
The umbilicus of limbo, Antonin Artaud

The umbilicus of limbo is a youthful text by Antonin Artaud, in which we find visions and thoughts that would mature in later writings. Alienation from the world, nostalgia for lost meaning, the creation of a new language, the pain of the fragmentation of identity. In this mise en scène, the body and the voice are lucid testimony to the agony of the real, they are primary mad material, aware and carnal reality that explodes and implodes, that says what is not named, that forges shapes without peace, that proceeds obsessively towards a non-end. Space, ascending towards the sky and descending towards the Earth, is the mirror of alienation, of the impossible access to a composed, determined, graspable order. An ambiguous place of crossing, contaminated by elements of a surrealist nature such as fabrics, colours, sticks and aquariums. As in Artaud, this path proceeds in a contradictory tension: on the one hand the desire to free oneself, to tear oneself to pieces, to keep oneself outside the world, on the other the desire for reconstitution, for sharing the path in an attempt to regain contact with the community and overcome solitude.

Starting from the experience of ‘being|staying’, try to explore the infinite possibilities of transformation that the body offers. The work proposes a process that makes the body malleable and sensitive, ready to change rhythm, dynamics, state. A body free to choose, at any time and in any place, that doesnʼt hide in movement, but disarms itself, that places itself in a condition of fragility. That in the moment in which it is present and aware of itself, it surprises itself and discovers how much it is able to do, to be, to become, also through breath and voice. An immersion in a deep, intimate, open physical and perceptive state, which changes the space and time in which the body stands and acts. This process passes through the fundamental principles of the language of dance regarding weight, space and time, and then returns to the uniqueness of each person’s movement.

Born in 1991 in Ponte dell’Olio (Italy), Stefania Tansini graduated as a dancer at the Scuola D’Arte Drammatica Paolo Grassi. She has worked as a dancer for Romeo Castellucci, Cindy Van Acker, Simona Bertozzi, Luca Veggetti, Enzo Cosimi, Ariella Vidach. She currently collaborates as a dancer for Motus in the solo Of the nightingale I envy the fate and in Tutto Brucia. Other key encounters: Roberta Mosca, Yasmine Hugonnet, Raffaella Giordano, Michalis Theophanous, Cristina Rizzo, Nanou, Jan Fabre, Silvia Rampelli. The practice on the body and her personal journey accompany her in the creation of her choreographic, performative and visual projects, and in the collaboration with and for other artists. She is on a research path of authorship on the body, which she carries out through choreographic projects such as My Body trio (project winner of the Toscana Terra Accogliente 2020 announcement), My Body solo (project winner of the DNA 2020 announcement), Punti di ristoro 2020, La grazia del terribile (Rete e Critica 2020 award), Questione di vita o di morte 2018, Linea Umana 2017. She realised with photographer Luca Del Pia the video-installative project Stupid Girls and Due Madri, with composer Paolo Aralla and Guido Barbieri Dove finisce il volo, with Paolo Aralla the performance for home spaces Interno Notte and Utera with Secret Theatre Ensamble and Tempo Reale, a performance with biodynamic sensors. She is an associate artist at the Fondazione Teatro Grande in Brescia. In December 2022, Stefania Tansini is awarded with the prestigious Ubu Award by Fondazione Ubu per Franco Quadri, as best Italian performer under 35.

Boarding Pass Plus Dance is a a project for professionalization and international mobility for dancers, choreographers, curators and producers funded by the Italian Ministry of Culture and promoted by a network of Italian organizations initiated by Comune di Bassano del Grappa – Operaestate / CSC with Associazione Culturale AREA06 – Short Theatre, Fondazione Piemonte Dal Vivo – Circuito Regionale Multidisciplinare, BASE Milano and Santarcangelo dei Teatri. The network shares the common mission of supporting the artistic development and professional growth of Italian artists by promoting their creative processes through mentoring and residencies, by presenting and facilitating the circulation of their works nationally and internationally. Boarding Pass Plus Dance is a response to the increasing need for artists to connect with the international scene, to research and discover new inspirations as much as to develop new collaborations and maximize their visibility.
In light of the new international challenges, the project rethinks the notion of mobility by providing Italian dance makers long residencies to create their own works, peer-to-peer artistic exchanges to cultivate future collaborations, public platforms on specific themes such as sustainability, inter-culturalism and dramaturgy in partner’s location and online presentations, dedicated to specific geographical areas to allow alternative forms of traveling and networking, exploring the digital as a collective space to overcome isolation and national borders.

Utopia Home – International Empathy Centre is the latest initiative by the Łaźnia Nowa Theatre in Krakow. A place of cooperation, exchange and partnership of artistic communities and the inhabitants of Nowa Huta in Krakow. The project includes a modern education centre, craft workshops, a meeting space, artistic residences, and a movement and rest zone. The building, which can accommodate up to 600 people, will carry out a non-theatrical programme of Łaźnia Nowa: concerts, performances, film screenings, social university discussions, literary meetings, workshops and activities combining innovative ideas, forms and concepts. Utopia Home is created by Małgorzata Szydłowska and Bartosz Szydłowski, who are the founders of Łaźnia Nowa. “The concept of empathy and art has accompanied us since the beginning of our artistic activities, which is for over 25 years. The theatres that we created in Krakow’s Kazimierz, and then in Nowa Huta were not theatres in the classic sense of the word, says Małgorzata Szydłowska, director of Utopia Home. We thought of them as places of general culture. Utopia Home will be an expansion of this concept, but also a kind of laboratory in which we will seek a completely new language of art”.




progetto, coreografia, danza Stefania Tansini
progetto musicale Paolo Aralla
testi Raffaella Colombo
dramaturg Raffaella Colombo
produzione Nanou Associazione Culturale foto video e editing Luca Del Pia
artista supportata da Fondazione Teatro Grande di Brescia

© Ilaria Costanzo
© Luce Del Pia